Jigsaw – What is CAMHS?

CAMHS stands for child and adolescent mental health services. It is an NHS service organised into 4 tiers.

Tier 4 – Specialised services

For children with the most serious of needs who require high levels of support. The services are provided usually within inpatient units but can also be delivered through specialised outpatient teams including services for eating disorders, treatments for psychosis and secure/ forensic services. These services are organised regionally so children may need to travel further afield to gain the specialised support they need e.g. Oldham, Bury or Prestwich.

Tier 3 – Multi Disciplinary services

For children who need a multi- agency approach due to their needs being complex and persistent. Tier 3 services are sometimes referred to as Core CAMHS and are based at the Tree House within Stepping Hill Hospital. The multi- disciplinary team is made up of Child and Adolescent Psychiatrists, Clinical psychologists, a Family therapist and Mental Health Practitioners many of whom specialise in different therapeutic interventions e.g. cognitive behavioural therapy and attachment work.

Tier 2 – Community and Primary care services
For children who require support from Mental Health specialists. Tier 2 services aim to support children with less complex needs who would benefit from brief interventions. Tier 2 services are made up of Secondary Jigsaw (Education based team) and Kite (Social Service based team).The Tier 2 teams are made up of Mental Health Practitioners, Teachers, Youth workers, Social workers and Family support workers.

Tier 1 – Universal services

For all children. Tier 1 practitioners are not mental health specialists. They are people who work in universal services e.g. Schools, Youth services, G.P Practices and Primary Care Health Workers. The aim of the Tier 1 service is to promote positive mental health and identify problems early on so children can be referred onto specialist services.

Who can refer and how?

People working within Tier 1 can refer to Tier 2 services by completing a community CAMHS referral form. All referrals are discussed at a multi- agency panel which meets each Tuesday at the Tree House. Referral forms can be requested from The Tree House by telephoning 0161 419 2050/2053. Prior to completing a referral form for the Secondary Jigsaw team all potential referrals need to be discussed within a telephone consultation with a member of the Jigsaw team. This can be done by contacting the Jigsaw Office on 0161 428 9305.

Referrals direct to Tier 3 services can only be made through the child’s family G.P or through the school nurse. Children in acute need can attend Stepping Hill A and E department where an urgent assessment with a Tier 3 worker can be arranged as needed.

Referrals directly to tier 4 cannot be made by tier 1 workers. This would happen through existing tier 3 support or emergency psychiatric assessment by a child and adolescent psychiatrist.